The prophet Jeremiah lived through the greatest disaster that befell the nation of Israel: the final stages of its conquest and exile. There was nothing left to hope in. In the throes of this disaster Jeremiah finds it easier to believe in God’s judgement & wrath than in his mercy & joy in his people. That is the state that Jeremiah is in when he questions God over buying a field, a possession in Israel, when all is lost (Jeremiah 32:25). He can’t see past the present judgement to a future hope. We can find ourselves in the same position.
God is straight with Jeremiah (32: 36-44) on the coming judgement, and equally straight about the future hope. Just listen to what God says:
“Behold I will gather them.” 32:37
“They shall be my people, and I will be their God.” 32:38
“I will rejoice in doing them good.” 32:41
“I will plant them … with all my heart and soul.” 32:41
In the depths of disaster and difficulty it is always hard to hold on to the promises. And yet, the promised disaster arriving was straightforward proof that God was following through on his promises, and if he has followed through with promised disaster he will follow through on promised good.
Not every difficult time is a judgement on us, Job’s story proves that conclusively, but in every difficult time we have the promise of good through a faithful God who has fulfilled every promise he has made. When he promises “they will be my people and I will be their God” he will do it!
That this same God rejoices in doing us good and plants us with all his heart and soul should give each one of us cause to rejoice in him, and live in him and with him with all our hearts and souls.
In the depths of disaster and difficulty let’s hold on the the precious promises that God has already given us, knowing that he will fulfil them.